LD18: Missed the Deadline but Continuing On

I got to Iteration 3 by scrapping some of the art and animations I had planned for Iteration 2. Those story points go back into the backlog.

Iteration 3

Iteration 3 was a bear. It was where a lot of the advanced AI had to be implemented. I’ve never done A*. Most of my AI was very simplistic, which went with the simplistic games I’ve done before. This game was going to be different.

Or at least I hoped it would. Entities would bumble about, get stuck, and fly off the world map even though I explicitly told them not to!

I had a quick lunch which was easy to make while I continued to work.

Vegan pizza and applce juice

Unfortunately, the deadline for the main Ludum Dare compo passed when I finally figured out the A* algorithm (it turned out that there was a greater-than sign when there should have been a less-than sign, which is why the entities were moving so strangely). After the pathfinding, the entities still had to interact.

I had the Hero moving toward targets it sees nearby, although every so often I see that he gets stuck in a certain tile for some reason. Enemies seem to have trouble moving to the Hero like I expect, but they find him soon enough.

But with Iteration 4, they fight!

Iteration 4

Do you see how the Hero’s health is down?

See enemies put on the hurt!

That’s the first time it has been like that outside of arbitrary tests being conducted. One of the dragons did that! Good job, my babies!

Since the main compo is over, the only option I have left is to continue on. I can still try to enter the Ludum Dare Jam, which gives me an extra 24 hours before the submission deadline.

For now, though, I’m going to bed. These last 48 hours have been grueling, frustrating, and exciting.

2 comments to LD18: Missed the Deadline but Continuing On

  • Not that you’ve asked for my opinion :o)

    BUT….

    IMO, All the time you save with upfront prototyping is completely cancelled out by your project planning. Milestones/iterations are less useful without timeframes or deadlines. The only time the requirements can really be specific is when you’re looking ahead to the next one. On a more specific note, you probably burned too much time on the UI and title screen menu before writing any gameplay code.

    All that said, this is a 48 hour competition and this looks like one of your most solid attempts to date! Great job!

  • Thanks, Paul! I don’t think the project planning would have been such a problem if I could have reduced the scope of some of it. And you’re right about the UI and title screen, although the UI part was needed in the actual game play. Clicking on a monster selection and then clicking on the towers was surprisingly easy once I got that GUI functionality in.

    That said, I think that next time, I’m going to try to bring my library of code with me to LD. Writing a lot of this boiler-plate stuff is what killed my time.

    Also, the art didn’t need to be so detailed. I either need to learn how to use the Gimp properly, or I need to stick to abstract shapes. The hero could have been a rectangle of a solid color, and the enemies could have been different rectangles of solid color, and it would have let me focus on the hard part, which was learning/implementing the AI.

    What’s annoying is that this isn’t the first LD where I learned to stop worrying about the art details. I’m not going to make them look any prettier by spending more time on them. B-)